Cycling and Yoga
I should probably stretch more. I recently asked my chiropractor if there was a common problem with the cyclists she sees. "Tight glutes" was the reply. My hamstrings, glutes, lower back and neck have all been aching just recently. On a short ride the other day it felt at times as though someone was performing a hip operation on me with dessert spoons.
It isn't as though I'm not fairly flexible. I first went to a yoga class nearly thirty years ago (although visits since then have been rather sporadic). And for ten years or so I trained in karate, which uses similar positions to increase or maintain flexibility.
I wonder how flexible top professional cyclists are. Even allowing for the compact frames they ride there seems to be an almost obscene amount of seat post sticking out of the frame, and they reach down a long way to the drops. Chris Boardman will tell you about the importance of aerodynamics and forming yourself in to the smallest possible shape to punch your way through the air. Or something like that. Wiggins gets himself in to a position where his back is perfectly flat on his time trialling bike. I don't think I could hold that position for more than about five minutes, by which time I would have crashed into the back of a milk float or something, because I wouldn't be able to get my head up high enough to see where I was going.
Over the years my yoga teachers, karate instructors, physiotherapists and chiropractors have given me various positions and stretches to do. I am no doubt the worse for not having done them often enough. But it's not like riding a bike is it?